As featured in bitterandblue.sbnation.com
Manchester City almost dropped important points in the league game against Watford on Tuesday night. City looked comfortable all evening at Vicarage Road and sought to add to the 2-0 lead before things suddenly took a dramatic turn in the final stages of the game. After pulling a goal back, the home side pressed hard for an equaliser leaving the Sky Blues hanging on for a win. But had City, and in particular, Gabriel Jesus taken his chances in the game, the Hornets’ goal would have served merely as a consolation.
The young Brazilian’s profligacy in front of goal has seen him net only once in 12 Premier League matches this season. It could be recalled that he came under severe criticism for his failure to score a single goal for Brazil at the World Cup despite having a good campaign with City last term. But Pep Guardiola has kept faith with the 21-year-old as his second striker behind Sergio Aguero. The Catalan manager has defended his man when questions have come up in press conferences about his lack of goals.
Guardiola is right that Jesus’ role in the team goes beyond goal-scoring. He usually puts in a good shift whenever he is on the pitch. His work rate is always high making him an important part of the manager’s pressing game. With contributions to goals in terms of assists too, he proves very valuable. For example, he was the provider for Riyad Mahrez’ goal against Watford that enabled City